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Pay It Forward: Helping a program at Idalou ISD that provides snacks to students

Published: Jul. 22, 2020 at 7:57 AM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - On this Week’s Pay It Forward, WesTex Federal Credit Union went to Idalou to help a program that provides snacks for kids during the school year.

Idalou ISD’s Snack Pak 4 Kids program is for students in kindergarten through fifth grade. The national program has been a part of the school for three years.

“What we have found in with research is, in Texas, one in four students is food insecure, which means that they don’t know where their next meal is going to come from,” Amy Caddell, the coordinator for the program, said.

During the school year, Idalou Elementary School students are sent home with a “snack pack” for the weekend.

“Kids can’t learn if they’re hungry and what we found is when they go home with snacks over the weekend (name brand/ new food) They come back on Monday and are prepared to learn,” Caddell said.

Before COVID-19 hit, the school had 33 kids enrolled in the program. After the pandemic, the number of students tripled to more than 100.

“There was a concern that we had kids that weren’t getting fed over the weekends,” Jerry Estrada, Idalou High School’s principal, said. “The only square meals that they were getting were during the school day. And so we wanted to make sure that we had an outlet for the community to give back to those kids, and to give them an opportunity to have a good square meal during the weekends.”

The group says they couldn’t do the program without the help of the community and school administrators.

“We have a great community at Idalou. They’ve always supported our children; they support the school,” Caddell said. “And when we saw the need, I just reached out to some community members, some people that I knew, care about our children. 100 percent of the donations go directly to food. it’s a community-based program, but we couldn’t do without our administrators, and the school and all the people that come together.”

You can find more info on Idalou’s Snack Pak 4 Kids program, click here.

For those who would like to nominate someone for Pay It Forward, they can fill out the form at KCBD.com.

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